Branding faq

To help understand the branding process, we’ve compiled a list of the most frequently asked Questions, with answers, that we receive.

What is the minimum order quantity for branding an order?

There is no minimum order quantity but setup charges associated with each branding process still apply.

When the setup charge is amortized over smaller quantities, the cost per unit is higher i.e. Branding 50 units versus 10 units always works out cheaper per unit.

Should you need a pre-production sample, we offer sample branding at reduced rates.

How do the ETA’s on new stock work and why does it change?

Clients are able to place back orders for incoming stock just as they place orders for stock we have on hand. An ETA is an estimated time of arrival. When we order new stock from our suppliers we cannot guarantee a date that the stock will be available for sale. Possible reasons for this include manufacturing, shipping and stock clearing customs delays which could postpone the entire shipment. We also have an internal quality control team that has to check the shipment once it arrives. If the stock does not meet the Quality Standard it will not be released for sale.

When stock is reported as missing/damaged, why do we ask for so many details such as tape on the box, if branded or not and the weights stated on the box?

When stock goes missing or is damaged we take it very seriously as we strive to provide a world-class service. We ask for the tape colour and weights to ascertain where the error originated: if it was from our suppliers, the warehouse or branding. If the stock is misprinted we need pictures so that we can investigate if the order can be fixed or if we need to replace the stock. This way we can give you an answer and start with the replacement process swiftly.

We need all of this information so that we can constantly improve our service and look for ways to avoid such mishaps in the future. For full information, please see our terms and conditions on our website.

Why is the first day of a branding lead-time only the day after I approve even if I approve first thing in the morning?

There are production planners based in each branding department. The planners’ responsibility is to schedule all branding jobs for that particular department. They look at the queue of jobs and determine which order they need to be run in for us to meet the given lead-times. As the day’s schedule has to be created in advance, we need to give the planner time to work out the schedule. When a job is approved, it is added to the production queue but because the jobs for that particular day have already been planned and ordered, it cannot be included in the same day’s schedule as it will affect the jobs already in the production queue.


Why do we charge a full setup fee for repeat artwork?

Even though we may have the artwork on file, all of our machines need to be setup for individual orders. The machine settings are different for each item and must be adjusted with each order. The greater part of the setup fee is charged for the amount of time and the labour involved in setting up a machine. A setup takes approximately 45-60 minutes in all branding departments, except for screen and pad printing where it can take 45-60 minutes for each colour being branded. In embroidery, because the artwork has already been digitized from the first order, we do not charge a full set up fee. We only charge for the labour involved in setting up the machine.

Why do I have to approve a layout for a repeat job?

This may seem tedious but our layouts are not only for artwork purposes; they also ensure that the correct stock codes and quantities are being branded. Any warnings also remain on the layout so that you are aware of potential problems which may arise by branding in the manner shown on the layout.

Why can you not do a quick trace of the logo and use it for branding?

We cannot use quick traced artwork because it is not a true reflection of the original artwork. Quick traced artwork often has uneven edges and detail from the original logo is lost. This leads to the print quality being compromised. See our Artwork FAQ’s available on our website which explains this process in detail.

I have a non-vector logo that my other printer used, why can’t we just redraw it?

The majority of print processes require vector artwork so it is likely that the printer redrew the artwork. We do offer redraws and have a designer dedicated to recreating artwork but we have a huge number of requests for them. We offer free redraws if it can be done in 10 minutes or less. Unfortunately, anything over 10 minutes has to be charged for. In some instances artwork cannot be redrawn for example photographs and low resolution images where the details are not distinct.

Which branding processes allow for personalization?

We offer personalization in:

  • Embroidery
  • Laser Engraving
  • Digital processes (sublimation, heat press, domed and vinyl stickers, digital transfer)

The reason for this is every other department needs a screen, plate or die to be made. This means that we will have to setup for each individual personalization, which is not cost effective and very labour intensive.

Why can’t we brand bigger than what is indicated on the branding guideline?

Each item is tested before a guideline is created to determine the best possible option for branding. We have to brand on the flattest part of the item that is free of any obstruction so if an item has a seam or border, it limits the available space for branding. Similarly, we can’t brand on a curved as it causes the branding to distort. These factors, as well as productivity and the quality of the branded item, are taken into account so as not to compromise on our high standard of branding.

Why is there a limit to the number of colours which can be screen printed?

With screen printing, we have to apply a light glue spray to the board on the machine so that the item sticks to the board. This prevents movement during printing so that the branding position is consistent and, in addition, when branding more than one colour, that the registration of the artwork is correct. In cases where an item has a lining, only the bottom layer of the lining sticks to the board leaving the top layer loose and as a result, we cannot ensure that all the colours in the artwork register correctly. Another reason why colours may be restricted is due to the nature of the material we are branding on. When we branding a multi-colour logo we need to dry the print after each individual colour is added. Some items cannot withstand long periods of heat therefore we cannot dry each individual colour and we restrict the amount of colours that we can brand on that item.

What does ‘convert to curves’ mean?

When artwork contains wording in a certain font and the font is not converted to curves, it remains in a text format. This means that when the artwork is imported into a design programme, the programme will read it as text that can be edited. If we do not have the font that the wording was created in, the design programme will automatically convert it to a different font that we do have. This will compromise the artwork and the font will not be exactly the same as what was used in the original artwork. Converting to curves means that the design programme reads the font as a drawing instead of text and, as such, the programme will not require a font. To do this, the artwork needs to be opened on a computer that has the required font installed and converted to curves. Alternatively, can send us the required font file so we can install it and open the file.

How will we know when a special ends?

All our specials have an expiration date. If no expiration date is stated then the offer will continue indefinitely. If at any point we decide to discontinue the offer, this will be clearly communicated in advance.

How do personalisation charges work?

Normal branding prices plus an additional personalisation fee per item apply. The additional charge is necessary because extra time needs to be taken when personalising items to ensure that all the items have the correct names and that there are no duplicates. If you are doing personalisation in embroidery, each name needs to be digitized. The fee covers the extra labour.

Why do you charge different setups when we are branding the same item with the same logo just in different colours?

If a logo is the same colour but going on different colour items, then only one setup is charged.

When we change print colour we have to set up the machine again. For instance, when screen printing, once we print the logo in the first colour, we have to take the screen off the machine, clean off all the ink and then set the machine up again before we print the logo in another colour.

Why do we charge different setups when we are branding the same logo in the same branding process but on different items?

There are a couple reasons for this. Each item has its own jig: a place holder for the item that is mounted onto the machine. Every time we change the item, we have to change the jig and reset the machine so that the logo is printed in the correct position. Another reason is that not all the items have the same branding space so on some items we can brand a larger logo than on others which means that the artwork will be different. For instance, if we are screen printing two items with the same logo but the logo is a different size on each item, we need two different screens.